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Quotes of the week

16 April 2021

Quotations from the late Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh


The idea that the world can easily do without religious inspiration betrays a very limited outlook. The extent to which humanity has been converted from groups of superior animals to peaceful and compassionate communities is largely due to the vision and to the example of the great religious leaders.

If that process towards more civilised living is to go on, many more people will have to be exposed to religious thought, so that some, at least, can open up a line of communication which may eventually allow a message to get through. Those who receive a message, whether weak or strong, will have to live and work by it every moment of their lives.

Without the chance of receiving the message, the most well-meaning, energetic, and intelligent human being is really no more than a humble bee trapped in a bottle. Without the sort of moral inspiration which is the whole purpose of religion, all our institutions become rather pointless. Why bother to educate? Is it possible to have a purposeless culture? What is the point of justice? Why be concerned about the weak and helpless, isn’t honesty just a vain hope?

Mother Teresa has shown by her life what people can do when the faith is strong. By any standards what she has done is good. The world today is desperately in need of this sort of goodness, this sort of practical compassion

on awarding the Templeton Prize to Mother Teresa of Calcutta, April 1973


We desperately need the conviction of religious belief to guide us in the way we live on, and use, the planet. We have got to learn to balance the economic and scientific realities against the religious demands for responsibility and consideration for the created world. It is not going to be easy, but I am sure that belief and conviction are very powerful motives to care for our planet with all its diversity

on the Alliance of Religions and Conservation, 2002


I suspect that it never occurred to her that her action was in any way special. She was a person with deep religious faith, and she would have considered it to be a totally human action to fellow human beings in distress

describing his mother, Princess Alice of Battenberg, and her protection of a Jewish family during the Second World War. He was visiting her grave in 1994


I’ve just done what I think is my best. Some people think it’s all right. Some don’t. What can you do? I can’t suddenly change my whole way of doing things. I can’t change my interests and the way in which I react to things. It’s part of my style. It’s just too bad, they’ll have to lump it

undated quotation


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